Saturday, 1 November 2008


Apologies for the behaviour of that naughty Delores yesterday. Fancy packing me off to landfill with a flea in my ear just so she can sort out my cleaning affairs. Tsk - as if I haven't got anything else to think about. It is nice to have a clean bathroom though!

Now it might seem extreme but I have officially named November as my BUY NOTHING NEW MONTH, which means, apart from birthday gifts for family members, food and other household essentials, I shall not buy anything new for the next 29 days!

It all starts today!

And I can tell you, it's going to be blimmin' hard.

Not only have I got a wedding to dress up for next weekend, but I've also been invited to a Pampered Chef party this week, you know the kind, where the salesperson cooks up something really tasty before your very eyes using gadgets that promise to turn you into a domestic goddess and your resistance weakens.

However the hardest part will be avoiding buying a new teapot to replace the one that I accidentally boiled on the stove the other week.

I'd turned on the gas hob to boil the kettle, just as Mr A asked me to check something on the computer. Minutes later, he lifted his nose in the air, took a sniff and helpfully proclaimed "There's something burning!"

And yep, it was the teapot! My gorgeous blue one that I'd bought from Whittards about 10 years ago. Like a twerp, I'd turned on the wrong knob. The kettle was still as cold as a cucumber but the teapot was hot and cracked, resting in a bath of hot tea. As it happened the Twinings breakfast blend turned out to be a fantastic hob cleaner, but that was no silver lining to the black cloud that was beginning to brew.

So why am I doing this "buy nothing new" month?

I suppose over the years I've got to know my habits really well and because I've got the willpower of a cat tossing a bird, November has become a dangerous month in both the financial and clutter departments

You see it's the Christmas shopping that gets me every time.

It's like "One for for for for me", and by the time I've bought my Auntie Dilys her regular Thorntons chocolates along with a box for my Auntie Pat, I'll be heading home with a new book and a pair of boots I couldn't resist along the way!

...Which brings me back to my lovely teapot.

I only purchased it because I'd bought an equivalent one for my sister, liked it so much that I paid for an extra. Then there were the pastry forks that I decided to keep for myself and ended up buying a replacement pressie.

There you go. Surely you'll agree that some form of therapy is definitely in order!

So this year I promise to be wise, grasp the willpower and just say no.

Instead of reaching for the credit card, I will pass things by and if I still want them in December, I'll add them to my Christmas list.

It will really make a refreshing change to have things for Christmas that I've actually anticipated and longed for, even if it is just for a few weeks, instead of buying stuff there and then!

You never know, I might not even need them after all.

But I do really need a new teapot. I've missed it too much and I hate dunking teabags in cups and mugs, which is why this month might turn out to be a real challenge indeed.

I suppose the only saving grace is that I'm such a blimmin' fusspot, it'll probably take me a month to find a suitable replacement.

So why don't you join me in this mad crusade. It could save us both some cash and make December even more special. Go on...29 days isn't that it?



esther said...

I am actually really thinking about it...problem is that it's often not me, but my hubby that buys things...But what the heck, I''ll start this month with a kind of "withdrawal" and do it in January (yes Xmas month is not the good one)Let me just find out if it is possible this month to keep on saying no to the kids!

good luck on your month!

Katy said...

How about buying second hand? Charity and second hand shops have loads of teapots! Or is that not the "nothing new" you meant?

just Gai said...

Great idea and I wish you luck Mrs A, but I'm afraid I'm going to have to follow Esther's lead and put off the challenge until January. I could leave Christmas shopping until December but we've just had a loft conversion and the new bedroom needs flooring, decorating and furnishing which will require a trip to Ikea within the next week.

Anonymous said...

Maybe you could ask for a teapot on Freecycle? Even if it wasn't aesthetically to your taste, it would serve its function for November, you could add a prettier teapot to your Christmas list, and then re-freecycle the November pot.

Almost Mrs Average said...

Hi Esther - LOL, saying no to the kids is the hardest part. Hee hee, I have to confess that my month officially started after Little T weedled a new car out of me in London. He won't be doing that again for a few weeks. ;-D

Hi Katy - I know it sounds drastic, but I'm even going to avoid charity shops as well this month. I've been taking a load of things in lately and each time I drop stuff off, I seem to acquire something to take home. LOL, take the necklace I bought last week for instance...blimey, I don't need another necklace, but it was too nice to resist. However, I did get a fab pair of Betty Barclay boots last week for just £25. I was going to hold out for Boots as a definite Christmas buy, but these were too good to miss. No this month even for the teapot charity shops are going to be off the list. However, if I realise I can't actually do without something, they'll be the first port of call ;-D

Hi Just Gai - that's great that you'll join Esther in January. Good luck at Ikea, sounds like you've got a fab project on your hands. :-D

Hi Jane - Now that's a sneaky idea. I like the sound of that. I think I'm going to do that now.

Anonymous said...

Good luck with your project. November probably is the hardest month because of the Christmas shopping. I challenge you to make some gifts with all the free time you have from not going shopping!

Katy said...

I admit I was coming at it purely from a declutter perspective rather than financial (which I guess is the only difference between Freecycle and charity shops!) - also, to me, replacing something you had before definitely adds no clutter. Especially an essential item like a teapot! :)

I admire your attitude and wish you luck with the challenge!

Almost Mrs Average said...

LOL Jen, maybe it's because I'm in denial that Christmas is around the corner. Happens to me every year. Now as for that challenge, it might well be time for me to demonstrate what I can do with a few beads and some wire :-D

Thanks Katy - You're absolutely right about the clutter angle and I'm now thinking whether I should just get an old one and decorate it myself, or even get Mr A to do it seeing as he's even more fussy than me...sshhh don't anyone tell him I said that. On the subject of teapots, you're right about them being essential. I never used to think that but I've slowly come round to the idea. And all credit to whoever invented the object that has become so ubiquitous. A beautifully shaped object indeed!

By the way, if anyone does have an unused Whittards teapot that they would like to just being cheeky I know....better get the paints out! :-D

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